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Life Arts    H3'ed 3/12/17

Racism as Obscenity

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In the Rock and Blues Museum, Clarksdale, MS
In the Rock and Blues Museum, Clarksdale, MS
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Today, a friend shared this with me. I had thought David Allan Coe had gotten this out of his system some years ago. Apparently I was mistaken.

This is an audio file, so it doesn't get ratings, but I must advise you that if it did I would rate it XXX not just for sexual epithets and expressions but because it is the most over-the-top racism I have heard in music since-- well, since I last listened to David Allan Coe.

David Allan Coe is a racist, or a former racist, depending on whose account you're reading. I have read both.

I know he also did hard time in prison, over something that somehow involved race, and that before that he also wrote a fairly popular song (among his enthusiasts) called "She Ran Off With A N****r." ("...A big ol' boy named Buck...")

Some commenter far below said he's a comedian, and his group is black. I don't know about that, but, well, pardon me, but perpetuation of the deepest racist stereotypes and slurs just doesn't seem to be a real knee-slapper.

Am I missing something? I didn't get the joke.

The uploader of this YouTube video understands, by his comment, that this is really inflammatory material, potentially dangerous to the development of young minds; if there were age limits for audio presentations, I would have put as high an age limit as states have to drink, or at least to vote.

Coe has a Constitutionally protected right to write and sing songs like this, and the same Constitution gives his producers, distributors, promoters, etc. the right to produce, distribute, promote, and make money off this material.

However, all those parties, including Mr. Coe himself, and the musicians making their living with him, no matter whether they're white, black or spotted, should be ashamed that in the 21st century they should still be unashamed-- proud-- to be racist, which any reading of American history shows to be the worst tendency affecting North American events from the beginning of the European invasion-- uh, discovery (yeah, the Vikings were here first, I know).

I'm a songwriter and recording artist myself, besides being a geopolitical analyst. I have a song coming out on my new CD, on the French DixieFrog label, April 28, called "WBCN."

Music fans will readily recognize the call letters of the Boston station which included such pioneering FM jocks as Charles Laquedera and my old friend and antiwar colleague, the late "News Dissecter" Danny Schecter.

In 1975, I was living in Cambridge, and had had a several-year relationship with the station for one musical or political reason or another. While listening to the station on the radio I heard this weird advertisement.

I could swear it sounded like a woman was castrating a man in this ad for a movie, playing down in Copley Square. I heard other ads for this movie, called "Ilsa, She-Wolf of the SS," and soon found myself checking out the theater marquee at the Copley Square Cinema, solidly out of Boston's "Combat Zone," where one might more easily have expected such a film to be showing.

I parked, got pen and paper out of my van, went in, and standing in the dim red light of the "exit" light at the top of the viewing room I took notes. Very briefly, it was a film very, very loosely referencing Ilse Koch, a brutal Nazi prison camp guard. Experiments in the Dachau "Aviation Medicine" war crimes, castration, whippings of men to death by naked women, more, were all juxtaposed and combined with sexual gratification. It was worse than I had imagined.

The next day I went to the program manager and told him what I have said here: although the makers of the movie have the right to make it, the theatre has the right to show it, and the sellers have the right to sell it, given your station's history of standing up for culture and consciousness, you ought to think before you take their advertising money.

In brief, (and ironically) this programming director, maybe 6-10 years older than me, told me I was a fascist. Somehow I remained civil, left the station, and never turned on WBCN again.

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William P. Homans Social Media Pages: Facebook Page       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

My name is William Perkins Homans the third, but probably more people know me as the bluesman (and artist) Watermelon Slim.

I've been in the fight against war, fascism, injustice and inhumanity for 47 years. I was at MayDay, 1971, (more...)

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